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Expat Exchange - How to Get a Driver's License in Australia
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Matilda Bay in Perth, Australia


How to Get a Driver's License in Australia

By Joshua Wood, LPC

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Summary: Here's a primer on how to get your driver's license in Australia.

Sometimes when you're new to a country a task like getting your driver's license can make you feel like you're 16 years old again trying to pass your driver's test. Here's an overview of the process of getting your driver's license in Australia.

In Australia, the rules for foreigners driving can vary depending on the state or territory. However, generally, if you hold a valid driving license from your home country, you can drive in Australia for three months after your arrival. If you plan to stay longer, you will need to apply for an Australian driver's license from the state or territory in which you live.

Some states require an International Driving Permit (IDP) along with your home country's license. An IDP is a translation of your license into nine different languages and is used in conjunction with your home country's driving license. It's important to note that an IDP is not a standalone document or a substitute for a valid driving license.

Furthermore, if your license is not in English, you will need to carry an official English translation or an International Driving Permit. You must also carry your license with you at all times when driving.

Each state or territory has its own rules for converting your overseas license to an Australian one. Some may require you to take a driving test, while others may simply convert your license without a test if your home country's driving tests are recognised as being on par with Australian standards.

It's crucial to check the specific requirements of the state or territory you're in or planning to move to, as failing to comply with the local driving laws can result in fines or even legal action.

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About the Author

Joshua Wood Joshua Wood, LPC joined Expat Exchange in 2000 and serves as one of its Co-Presidents. He is also one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. Prior to Expat Exchange, Joshua worked for NBC Cable (MSNBC and CNBC Primetime). Joshua has a BA from Syracuse and a Master's in Clinical and Counseling Psychology from Fairleigh Dickinson University. Mr. Wood is also a licensed counselor and psychotherapist.

Some of Joshua's articles include Pros and Cons of Living in Portugal, 10 Best Places to Live in Ireland and Pros and Cons of Living in Uruguay. Connect with Joshua on LinkedIn.


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Matilda Bay in Perth, Australia

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Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
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Flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget. Use Promocode: LIFE10 and get 10% off your international health insurance for life!
Get Quote

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